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'I'm happy' - Wenger claims Super League was a 'weapon' to get more out of UEFA & was always set to fail

08:45 BST 21/04/2021
Arsene Wenger Arsenal 2020-21
The former Gunners boss has explained how he was convinced that the planned competition would fail to get off the ground

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes the Super League was doomed from the start and that it was only created as a "strategic weapon to get more out of UEFA".

Indeed, all six English teams confirmed in quick succession on Tuesday night that they would be pulling out of the planned continental competition, which had prompted outrage across Europe.

And Wenger has said that the leaders behind the Super League endeavour were "not well prepared" to handle the backlash that immediately followed the announcement of their plans over the weekend.

What's been said?

"[Ed Woodward] must have realised that this project was not well prepared," Wenger told beIN SPORTS in reaction to the news that Manchester United executive vice-chairman was resigning amid the Super League chaos.

"Look, if you want to create a Super League with two groups of 10 teams and you come out and you have only 12, and you know you can lose some of them, your project is not solid."

Wenger also explained how he would have reacted to the Super League had he still been in charge of Arsenal, adding: "I would never have supported any project that was not based on sporting merit.

"I believe that the official organisations like UEFA and FIFA have to protect the essence of the game and reward quality through competitive aspects. I would never have supported a league that's not based on sporting merit."

Asked if he would have quit his post as manager in protest, he added: "I would say when you're in this situation you cannot walk away from the club, you have a responsibility to at least go until the end of the season.

"I would never have believed a project like that had any chance to be successful anyway."

'I'm happy tonight'

Wenger, who now works as FIFA's Chief of Global Football Development, also revealed how he and football's world governing body were left feeling "very happy" at the apparent collapse of the Super League.

He said: "I'm happy tonight because the most important thing is that we remain a united organisation and football is played with the same rules all over.

"FIFA is the guarantee of that. We have to keep all the clubs inside the organisations. The unity of our game is the most important fact that we need to protect and give a chance to everybody in the world to play football in a competitive way.

"So, FIFA is very happy tonight. The way it was presented I always thought this was only a strategic weapon to get more out of UEFA. It looks so unprepared I couldn't believe they could go to the end of the story."

What next for the Super League?

Following the confirmation that the six Premier League clubs would be reversing their decision over joining the Super League, it was announced that the planned new competition would pause proceedings in order to "reshape the project".

A statement released by the Super League concluded: "Given current circumstances, we shall reconsider the most appropriate steps to reshape the project, always having in mind our goals of offering fans the best experience possible while enhancing solidarity payments for the entire football community."

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